Bartoleme de Las Casas, Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies. (). The Indies were discovered in the year one thousand four hundred and. Bartolome de Las Casas’ The Devastation of the Indies: A brief Account and the context of. Spanish colonisation reveal that the colonisers were repressive and. THE DEVASTATION. OF THE INDIES: A BRIEF ACCOUNT by Bartolomé de Las Casas. T. THE INDIES’ were discovered in the year one thou- sand four.

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The Historiawhich by his request was not published until after his death, is an account of all that had happened in the Indies just as he had seen or heard of it.

Bartolomé de Las Casas

In addition to studying the juridical problems of the Indies, he began to work out a plan for their peaceful colonization by recruiting farmers as colonists. He wholly destroyed the City it self, which the other Spaniards who were wont to harrace all the sea coast, were notwithstanding much indjes at, abominating acions so hainous committed against them who had been so courteous and liberal to them, and where they had been entertain’d as in their own houses.

San Juan [Puerto Rico] and Jamaica are two of the largest, most productive and attractive islands; both are now deserted and devastated.

But then gathering together very great Forces, they sought so vigorously, that the Spaniards despairing of victory resolved to retreat in a tempestuous night and to leave the City. Unsurprisingly, they were extremely unpopular in the Americas and were met with much resistance. Thus upbraiding their flight, Go carry letters to those who lye bid in the mountains and are fled from us.

The reason why they did captivate the Indians was only this; out of a perverse, obstinate and blind desire of heaping up Gold and riches, which is common to all that have gone into America. As to their dress, they are generally naked, with only their pudenda covered somewhat. With this kind of torture they put to death many other of the Princes and Noble men of the Country.

Which being known to the Indians, they cut off abundance of them upon re bridges of the Lakes: European exploration and colonialism, — These and devashation other things were prov’d before the fiscal of the Indies Council, and the several proofs are kept by the said Council; though it is most certain that they never put to death any of those cursed Tyrants, as if all the devastations and murders by them committed had not been at all to be regarded.


The sons of nobles among us, brought up in the enjoyments of life’s refinements, are no more delicate than are these Indians, even those among them who are of the lowest rank of laborers.

Bartoleme de Las Casas, Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies

And thus was depopulated that island which had been densely populated. There is no man that can sufficiently express the fertility of this Island, the temperateness of the air, or the multitude of the people that did inhabit it. With still others, all those they wanted to capture alive, they cut off their hands and hung them round the victim’s neck, saying, “Go now, carry the message,” meaning, Take the news to the Indians who have fled to the mountains.

Their food got with great pain and dropping sweat, the Spaniards still consumed, not content with what the poor Indians gave them gratis out of their own want; One Spaniard consuming in one day as much as would suffice three families, every one containing ten persons. It is important to look at A Short Account as an important observation of what was happening to the indigenous people at the hands of the Spanish conquistadors, but also as an example of rhetoric or propaganda.

In this Country at that time Canabao did reign, who for power, dignity, gravity, and the ceremonies which ddevastation used towards him, far exceeded the rest. Then replied the other, Let me go to Hell that I may devastatiion come where they are.

The Devastation of the Indies: A Brief Account – Bartolomé de Las Casas – Google Books

The argument was continued inand its repercussions were enormous. And all the land so far discovered is a beehive of people; it is as though God had crowded into these lands the great majority of mankind. They returning him answer, that they could not satisfy his request by reason that their Country afforded not Gold, were immediately by his command, without any cause or form lss proceeding, all burnt alive.

And who can now question but that his soul is now tormented in the flames of Hell! One time above the rest I saw four of the Nobles laid upon these perches, and two or three other of these kind of hurdles furnished after the same manner; the clamors and cries of which persons being troublesome to the Captain, he gave order that they should be hang’d, but the Executioner whose name I know, and whose parents are not obscure, hindered their Calamity from so quick a conclusion, stopping their mouths, that they should not disturb the Captain, and still laying indjes more wood, till being roasted according to his pleasure, they yielded up the ghost.


History of Political Thought. But soon his uncompromisingly pro-Indian position alienated his colleagues, and in he returned to Spain. Realizing that it was useless to attempt to defend the Indians at long distance in America, he returned to Spain in to plead for their better treatment. All the Lords and Noble men, were kept a while in chains, and afterward at the Commandment of the Spanish Captain, tied to stakes barrolome burnt to death.

And I have lately seen them so destroyed, that it would move the most stony heart to compassion. But when the Spaniards would not depart from thence, although the Viceroy used all his endeavors to recall them; he declared them Traitors and guilty devastatiob high Treason; and moreover, when the persevered in their tyranny and oppression, the tje persons seeing, that though revenge came late, that yet they would not go unpunished, and fearing left that revenge might fall upon their own heads, bzrtolome besides not being able to preach the Gospel in quiet, by reason of the incursions of the Spaniards, resolv’d to leave the Kingdome, which now remains o of all knowledge, the souls of these poor Indians remaining in their past miseries of ignorance and Heathenism, all the streams of divine knowledge being taken from them, by these cursed Spaniards, as when water is taken from the young plants; for at the time when they went away, the Indians were very covetous after the csaas of our Religion.

If you prefer to suggest your barholome revision of the article, you can go to edit mode requires login. Which being done for a daily continuance, in ten or twelve years they made a clean riddance of the inhabitants out of this place.

And the Christians attacked them with buffets and beatings, until finally they laid hands on the nobles indis the villages.

They came to a very large Town, which being confident lqs their own innocence, thought themselves safer then the rest; but in two hours space they brought such a desolation upon it, killing all ages and sexes, that there was not a person left alive, but what saved themselves by flight.

Some of the secular Spaniards who have been here for many years say that the goodness of the Indians is undeniable and that if this gifted people could be brought to know the one true God they would be the most fortunate people in the world.